A fence can direct foot traffic to an opening, serving almost like a set of walls. It also helps make an arbor seem more logically positioned by anchoring the structure.
There's also a botanical bonus to a fence. If you're growing vines on an arbor, the fence can serve as more support for them. And if privacy is your goal, a fence paired with an arbor can provide a little privacy but also a limited invitation for guests to come on in and enjoy your landscape with you.
Here, an arched garden arbor with a straight-line fence makes for a complementary pairing and defines a spot in the yard to stop and soak in the surroundings.
A fence can help tie a structure to its surroundings. This simple arched arbor gains stature from its trellis and vines and also because a matching grid fence tethers it to the house. Those elements give the structure more substance and also create a small alcove for plants.
Sometimes a fence's sole duty is to make an arbor look great. Here, none of the usual reasons for a fence would warrant a design as open as this one, which provides virtually no privacy and wouldn't do much to keep pets from straying. But as an aesthetic companion to an impressive arbor, the fence strikes a nice balance and lets the arbor keep its starring role.
A companion fence doesn't need to literally connect to the arbor, but the two should look as though they go together. Note that the design of this fence echoes many of the details of the arbor. Plus, it visually anchors the elaborate arbor in the space, helps screen the view, and provides some privacy.
The key to side yard privacy isn't necessarily to obstruct the view entirely but merely to screen views. In this case the grid trellis interrupts the sight line while the lush plantings atop and beside the arbor demand attention up front. Only the light through the gateway pulls the eye into the yard.
In older or historic neighborhoods where homes sit near the street, arbor-and-fence pairings like this one can make the most of a small front yard. Climbing roses add a vivid burst of color to the crisp white woodwork of the gated arbor and fence.
A substantial, richly stained wooden arbor and fence can give the illusion of depth and design complexity, without the fuss of ornate details or complicated joinery. The focus on simple elements that don't attempt to hide the skills of the builder is also a hallmark of Arts and Crafts design, making this arbor a natural choice in the landscape of a home of that period.
This hybrid design--part wall, part arbor--provides a good example of how garden structures can be closely tied to the architecture of the house and still work to define the outdoor environment. Although this adobe archway is part of a wall, the gateway role it plays for the patio area is all arbor.
Asian arbors are distinctive in design and materials as well as in construction techniques. One of the most common traditional techniques for attaching a structure's parts is tying them with rope or reeds.
This arbor-and-trellis structure uses pegged mortise-and-tenon joinery. Grids made of bamboo, often used as an accent material, reinforce the Asian feel.
If you choose to create an Asian-influenced arbor, make sure the accompanying fence also embraces the style. Though it's flanked by ornately carved fence panels and is fitted with matching gates, this arbor boasts a classically simple form.